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Jenna Lugonja
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CAHSD receives national accreditations

MIAMI (January 17, 2018)

Miami-Dade County Community Action and Human Services Department (CAHSD) is proud to announce that the department has received full accreditation from the Council on Accreditation (COA) in its first re-accreditation review since the merger of the Community Action Agency and the Department of Human Services. CAHSD is one of six public human services agencies accredited in the State of Florida, and one of 60 in the country. The national accreditation by COA is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon a social services agency and sets it apart from thousands of providers throughout the nation.

COA accreditation is an objective and reliable verification that CAHSD adheres to the highest standards and best practices in the delivery of comprehensive social services. "COA reviews and re-accredits the entire organization, not just specific programs,” said Lucia Davis-Raiford, CAHSD Director. “Residents can have confidence in the credibility and integrity of the services we offer throughout Miami-Dade County."

In addition, the CAHSD Psychology Internship Program has been re-accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) for ten years, the maximum accreditation period. CAHSD has been committed to the training of students in the mental health field for many years through its Psychology Internship Program. Interns are doctoral-level psychology students who collaborate with staff to implement evidence-based treatment models and provide direct services to clients, including those receiving treatment for substance use disorders, survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking, seniors, adults with disabilities and children enrolled in Head Start and Early Head Start programs. "Interns are extremely valuable to our Department," said Director Raiford. "They enhance the clinical services delivered to residents, and many graduates from the program move on to hold positions within a variety of agencies and institutions right here in Miami-Dade County."

The APA Commission on Accreditation (APA-CoA) is recognized by both the U.S. Department of Education and the Council of Higher Education Accreditation, as the national accrediting authority for professional education and training in psychology. One of the CAHSD staff psychologists is among the 32 persons appointed to the APA-CoA.

About CAHSD. CAHSD is the largest provider of comprehensive social services in Miami-Dade County, serving more than 100,000 children, seniors and families each year. Core services include: early childhood education and development; nutrition, socialization and independent living services for seniors and adults with disabilities; employability skills training; utility and rent/mortgage assistance; Veterans services; services for victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking; residential and outpatient substance abuse treatment; home and community revitalization services; psychological services; and youth development services.